Allianz Cornhill will not be "aggressively culling" its agencies in the run up to FSA regulation, according to commercial general manager Chris Hanks.

Hanks said that the insurer would be talking to brokers who were unlikely to become FSA authorised in order to come to a "business solution", rather than simply ending their agencies.

"These businesses have value to us. They may sell, merge or change plans. During 2003 we will be in contact with them to work out a solution," he said.

Other insurers have been taking a harder line with their agencies. Norwich Union is set to cull its agency base from 11,000 to less than 5,000 by March 2005.

In recent months Allianz Cornhill has been writing to its agents to ascertain their plans for regulation.

So far, 68% have responded, with the vast majority saying they would become directly authorised. Hanks said that the insurer would continue to press the remaining 32% for a response.